The All Odisha Devanga Mahasangha (AODM), the federation of traditional weavers in the state, has decried the Union Budget for neglecting the handloom sector.
While prime minister, Narendra Modi sent out the right vibes to encourage the manufacturing sector through his 'Make in India' campaign, Union finance minister Arun Jaitley has ignored this aspect and has not announced any special support to the handloom sector, said AODM president T Gopi..
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"After agriculture, it is the handloom sector which provides the highest employment to the people. Around one million weaver families are there in the state. The handloom industries in the country, particularly in the state, need adequate support from the government. But the sector seems to have been totally ignored in the Budget", he stated.
The federation has demanded increase in subsidy of yarn from 10 per cent at present to 20 per cent and establishment of raw material banks in each district, particularly those with high concentration of weavers.
"Since 10 per cent subsidy in yarn is not remunerative to the handloom workers to compete with the textile industries, we have demanded increase in subsidy to at least 20 per cent", said Gopi,
The federation has also demanded different facilities like interest-free loan to the weavers, subsidy on handloom equipment, housing facilities to the homeless weaver families, free treatment to all weaver families below poverty line (BPL) and free education to their children.
Besides, the federation has pitched for setting up of the National Institute of Design (NID), a premier design institute under the Unionn ministry of commerce and textiles at Berhampur.